Sunday, 30 October 2016

Video: Israeli Soldiers Throw Stones at Palestinian School Children

[ Ed. note – This video surfaced one day after an Israeli court dismissed criminal proceedings against two Israeli security guards implicated in the slayings of Maram Salih Hassan Abu Ismail, 23, and her 16-year-old brother, Ibrahim Taha (see my postfrom yesterday). I’m guessing these soldiers probably knew they were being filmed and didn’t care–which would suggest they no longer care what the world thinks of them. What other military of any other country in the world has ever been filmed throwing rocks at children? ]
This video shows Israeli soldiers in the occupied West Bank throwing stones at Palestinian schoolchildren in the village of al-Tuwani on 27 October.
According to the video’s captions, the Israeli soldiers are supposed to protect the children from attacks by Israeli settlers in the area.
But instead, as the video shows, the soldiers lob stones towards the children, including with a slingshot.
The soldiers also failed to come to the designated point to meet the children, according to the video, and “checked one child’s bag and stopped another one without a clear reason.”
Al-Tuwani is a village in the South Hebron Hills area of the occupied West Bank, where thousands of Palestinians living in dozens of small communities are resisting expulsion or the loss of their land from encroaching Israeli settlements.
Settlers from the nearby colony of Havat Maon habitually attack Palestinians.
In one such incident last November, masked, rock-throwing Israelis injured a 6-year-old Palestinian girl in the head.
The Israeli human rights group B’Tselem has regularly documented settler attacks, including a days-long rampage in Hebron a year ago while Israeli forces looked on and did nothing.
In other cases, Israeli occupation soldiers have been filmed protecting and assisting settlers as they attack Palestinians.
While Israeli soldiers and settlers enjoy near-total impunity for violence against Palestinians, Israel has recently toughened penalties for Palestinians, including children, accused of throwing stones.
Five Palestinian youths from the village of Hares are currently serving 15-year sentences imposed by Israeli military courts on accusations of stone-throwing that they deny. All five were children when they were arrested in 2013.
The video above was published online by Operazione Dove, an international group of peace volunteers that maintains a presence in al-Tuwani.
Note: An earlier version of this post stated that the incident in al-Tuwani occurred on 25 October, based on a caption in the video. However, Operation Dove has since confirmed to The Electronic Intifada that the incident occurred on 27 October and the date in the caption is an error.

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